Tyson Harvey youngest driver in history at Mount Panorama
Adelaide year 11 school student Tyson Harvey re wrote the history books during the Bathurst 6 Hour, as the youngest ever to qualify and race the prestigious Mount Panorama Circuit.
Tyson edged out Jonathon Venter’s previous record of 16 years 4 days at Bathurst, (Mount Panorama) the spiritual home of Australian Motorsport
Penrite Oil Brand Ambassador Tyson Harvey, who was entered with Stephenson Motorsport had to sit out the initial days practice on the Friday, while his co drivers, Scott Stephenson (Team principal and also the youngest as such on pit lane) and Chris Cotton, put the Hyundai Excel X3 through its paces and its first two 1 hour sessions of practice, as he was only 15 years old. The Mount Panorama Racing Circuit Act and Regulations state that “all personnel entering pit lane must be 16 years or over”, to which Tyson was not until the following day.
Tyson had a practice session and also qualified on his 16th birthday on the Saturday making him the youngest on record to do so at Mount Panorama. Tyson had minimal laps down but thanks to the Team strategy Tyson put some solid laps down in qualifying and managed to be ready for the Bathurst 6 Hour the following day.
Race day Sunday for the Bathurst 6 Hour saw Tyson step behind the wheel for the second and fourth hours making him the youngest ever to race the Mountain at 16 years 1 day, in a historic meeting that also saw the most amount of cars in an Endurance race leave the grid, 65 in total, since the start in 1938. Both of his one hour drive sessions were driven with consistency in mind, committing to his lines and also to deliver the car to his co drivers in one piece to enable a solid finish, to which they did!
Tyson drove with maturity and focus, taking to Australia’s highest calibre circuit with a high level of confidence and always being aware of where the faster cars where in his mirror so he could allow enough room for them to get by while remaining focused on his lines.
Highlights were leading the field behind the safety car for 2 laps then having a restart with the field racing around him up pit and mountain straight, and also the exhilaration of dropping over skyline and into the dipper, an experience Tyson will never forget.
Speaking with Tyson after the race he assured us that his week at Bathurst has definitely been the highlight of his race career to date and we can expect to see him back at Mount Panorama very soon and next year, albeit in another class.
The Stephenson Motorsport Team Excel finished the Bathurst 6 Hour in 42nd place a respectable 13 laps behind the eventual A1 winners of Luke Searle / Paul Morris, with no mechanical or vehicle damage, much to the surprise of pit lane.
Tyson would like to thank his co drivers Scott and Chris, the amazing Team at Stephenson Motorsport, his sponsors Penrite Oil, Adidas Motorsport, GP Racegear Australia, Warehouse 27, The Pool Man, Wheelworx Autostudio, Exhaust Technology, Speedy Wheels and everyone for all their support.
Follow all of Tyson Harvey’s racing updates on Facebook & Instagram @TysonHarveyRacing